Sex Offender Notification

Notification of Registered Sex Offender Policy and Procedure

Purpose:

To increase the safety and welfare of the students, employees and contractors of The Evergreen State College by providing timely and appropriate notification of the presence of a convicted sex offender. This notification shall be provided in accordance with applicable state law and in such a manner that fosters safety without creating excessive anxiety among students and staff. The notification policy applies to students, employees and individuals contracted by the college.

The extent and content of the disclosure of relevant and necessary information shall be related to:

  • The risk posed by the offender to the community
  • The location where the offender resides, intends to reside, is regularly found, or is employed; and
  • The needs of affected community members for information to enhance their individual and collective safety.

The College will not tolerate using this public information to threaten, intimidate or harass sex offenders.

Authority:

Pursuant to RCW 4.24.550, The Evergreen State College is authorized to release information to the public when the college determines that disclosure of the information about the sex offender is needed and necessary.

Additionally, under RCW 4.24.550, public employees and or public agencies are immune from civil liability or damages for any discretionary decisions or release of relevant or necessary information regarding a registered sex offender, unless it is shown that the employee o r the agency acted with gross negligence or in bad faith.

Sex Offender Responsibility:

In the State of Washington, convicted sex offenders must register in accordance with RCW 9A.44.130, which states, in part:

“Any adult or juvenile...who has been found to have committed or has been convicted of any sex offense...shall register with the county sheriff...of the person’s residence, or ...the county of the persons school, or place of employment...”

Student Sex Offender Responsibility:

Within ten days of enrolling or by the first business day after arriving on campus, whichever is earlier, all full or part - time student s must notify the sheriff for the county where the student resides of intent to attend the College. (RCW 9A.44.130)

Employee Sex Offender Responsibility:

A prospective college full or part-time employee must notify the sheriff for the county where the employee resides of the intent to accept a position at the college by the first day of employment. Current employees must notify the Associate Vice President of Human Resources of any sex offender conviction that occurs while employed. Such notification must occur within three days of the conviction.

Disclosure to the College community:

The extent of public disclosure of relevant and necessary information should not be based on bias, but directly related to:

(a) The level of risk posed by the offender to the community.

(b) The locations where the offender resides, expects to reside or is regularly found.

(c) The needs of the community members for in formation to enhance their individual and collective safety.

Definitions:

The Department of Corrections, the Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration, and the Indeterminate Sentence Review Board are required to classify all sex offenders released from their facilities into levels of risk ( Level I, Level II or Level III ). These agencies then issue to appropriate law enforcement agencies narrative notices regarding the pending release of sex offenders.

Level I

The vast majority of registered sex offenders are classified as Level 1 offenders. They are considered at low risk to re-offend. These individuals may be first time offenders and they are usually known by their victims. They normally have not exhibited predatory type characteristics and most have successfully participated or are participating in approved treatment programs. Many are first time offenders.

Washington state law strictly limits public disclosure of all Level I registered sex offender information. Information shall be shared with other law enforcement agencies and, upon request , relevant, necessary and accurate information may be disclosed to any victim or witness to the offense and to any individual community member who lives near the residence where the offender resides, expects to reside , or is regularly found. Level I offenders MAY NOT be the subject of general public notification.

Level II

Level II offenders have a moderate risk of re-offending. They generally have more than one victim and the abuse may be long term. These offenders usually groom their victims and may use threats to commit their crimes; they have a higher likelihood of re-offending than the Level 1 offenders. They are considered a higher risk to re-offend, because of the nature of their previous crime(s) and lifestyle (drug and alcohol abuse and other criminal activity). Some have refused to participate or failed to complete approved treatment programs. Typically these individuals do not appreciate the damage they have done to their victims. Washington state law prohibits the public disclosure of Level II registered sex offenders except under specific criteria. Level II notifications including relevant, necessary and accurate information may be disclosed to public and private schools, child day care centers, family day care providers, businesses and organizations that serve primarily children, women, vulnerable adults, and neighbors and community groups near the residence where the offender resides, expects to reside, or is regularly found. Level II offenders MAY NOT be the subjects of general public notification.

Level III

Level III offenders are the greatest risk to the community. Most are predatory, have other violent crime convictions, refused treatment and are known substance abusers. Community notification is the most extensive. Washington state law permits notifications about Level III offenders that include relevant, accurate and necessary information to the public at large as part of general notification.

Notification Procedure:

Notification from law enforcement will be made to the Police Services office. Police Services will review records to determine if the offender is a registered student or a college employee and/or communicate the offender status to the Vice President for Student Affairs.

  1. All official notifications to the College community shall come from the Vice President for Student Affairs or designee. Requests for additional information will be referred to the appropriate law enforcement agency.
  2. Upon learning of the enrollment/presence of a convicted sex offender at The Evergreen State College, the Vice President for Student Affairs will take the following steps:
    1. Obtain additional information, as necessary, from law enforcement and about the offender’s enrollment and employment history on campus.
    2. Meet with Senior Staff and review relevant information to assess safety issues posed for currently enrolled students and the Child Care Center.
    3. Notify the convicted offender to make him or her aware of the notification procedure. Other than the notification procedure, convicted sex offenders will receive the same rights and privacy protections provided to all students or staff.

Notification will correspond with the classification level in the following manner:

Level I –

(1) Senior Staff

(2) Selected Academic Deans and Student Academic Support Services

(3) Selected Administrators/Directors/Supervisors

(4) Faculty and staff in whose program/courses the offender is enrolled or employed

(5) Children’s Center

Level II –

(1) All Level I notifications

(2) Public Notification: Sex Offender Release posted on various office bulletin boards around campus including Police Services, Children’s Center, Admissions and Registration Services, Bookstore, Library, Computer Labs, Campus Recreation Center, Housing and areas overseen by student employees after business hours.

(3) Faculty will be provided the ability to exercise discretion with regard to notification of Level II offenders to students within their programs or others with whom the students may be working. This information should be shared with the intention of enhancing the safety of program participants and those who are in contact with program members as a result of program activities. Faculty members are welcome and encouraged to discuss with their Academic Dean or the Vice President for Student Affairs, factors such as program plans or the behavior history of the offender that might influence their decision. A synopsis from the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office of the date location and circumstances of the sex offence will be shared with the faculty. To further assist faculty a conversation with a detective of the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office Sex Offender Registration Unit or sex offender treatment provider can be arranged. Faculty can also consult with the Office of Sexual Assault Prevention on campus.

Level III –

(1) All Level I and II notifications

(2) Information provided to all college employees via campus mail and/or list serve

(3) The Vice President for Student Affairs will provide notification to the classes in which the offender is enrolled. If requested, the Vice President will meet with the program to share information regarding the relevant State law, the college’s sex offender notification policy and information released by the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office.